AAUP Brief Challenges Anti-Union FAQs

The AAUP submitted an amicus brief yesterday in the Oregon Court of Appeals in a case that involves the distribution of anti-union FAQs by Oregon State University. The appeal arose from an Oregon Employment Relations Board decision—based on the filing of an unfair labor practices complaint by United Academics of Oregon State University—finding that the university had violated a state law requiring neutrality in union organizing drives. According to the board, after soliciting faculty questions, OSU wrote or edited many of the questions in the FAQs while presenting them as faculty-initiated questions and failing to disclose any substantive changes. The board found that the manipulated questions and responses advanced a position against unionization.

Oregon State University and an amicus brief submitted by six public universities in support of OSU’s case argued that the FAQs were protected by shared governance. The AAUP amicus brief challenges that claim, explaining the importance of shared governance, which establishes a system for faculty participation in shared decision-making. The brief asserts that the FAQs, created and distributed unilaterally by the university, do not constitute shared governance. Further, the FAQs were not open and honest communications, an element essential to creating clearly structured and meaningful shared governance.

Read a summary of the amicus brief and download a PDF of the brief.

Publication Date: 
Wednesday, March 17, 2021